Best sports for ADHD kids include many sports your children most likely already play. If your kids don’t play any organized sports, though, and you want to get them more active, we might have some ideas for you.
For many parents with ADHD children, finding enough activities to keep them moving can be a challenge. We want our kids to be active and to get outside and away from technology. We know that physical activity improves ADHD. Still, we find it difficult to get them motivated to get active.
Sports can be a good solution for getting your kids active and outside. Sports, especially team sports, provide great sources of entertainment as well as outlets for energy. Which activities would be the best sports for ADHD, though? Which sports should my ADHD child play?
Though not every child shares the same personality and not every sport might be the most ideal. Still, in general, we can recommend some best sports for ADHD. If you need a good starting place, at least, we can provide some suggestions.
Competitive Group Sports for ADHD
Few sports require as much constant movement and energy as soccer. Soccer should rank as one of the best sports for ADHD children for this reason alone. Bar none, soccer provides a positive outlet for lots of energy.
The constant movement of the ball and players in soccer also limits the room for distraction to take hold. Most everything in soccer from practice to drills to games puts a high emphasis on muscle movement and coordination. While concentration is required, much more about soccer relies on muscle memory and practice through repetition. All these elements add up to provide a great team sport for ADHD children.
Lastly, soccer, as a team sport, provides a great environment and opportunity for children to practice their social interactions. Soccer cannot function as an individual sport. Every player must play for the team or the team falls apart. Try out soccer to help your ADHD child with their social interactions.
When compared with soccer, baseball definitely slows the activity down quite a bit. While not quite as fast-paced, baseball can still make the perfect match for your ADHD child in other areas. In fact, there might be some evidence that possibly a significant proportion of pro baseball players have ADHD.
For instance, baseball still requires a lot of physical activity and exertion. Additionally, it provides structure in terms of set player positions and focus to stay on top of the movement of the game.
Ultimately, baseball might not provide the best sport for every personality, but it can provide a great avenue towards increased focus as well as providing the socialization similar to soccer.
Playing baseball requires a more technical and skilled approach them some other fast paced team sports. It might be a perfect fit if you have an ADHD child who loves working out puzzles and being active.
Team Sports with Individualized Events
Being on a swim team can provide a great way for your ADHD child to get active, to be social, and to have direct input from a coach. Swimming has a great balance of individualized effort combined with team mentality. With swimming, coaches place emphasis on individual development while the team can help encourage teammates.
Swimming provides a rigid structure and schedule that many ADHD children and teens need in their lives. As with many sports activities, swimming requires a lot of focus and commitment. Overall, swimming provides several benefits for all types of children.
The structure of swimming and requirement for focus can help encourage good routines in your child’s life that will benefit them much later.
Gymnastics, like swimming, provides almost the perfect balance between a team atmosphere and individualized effort with great input and mentoring from a coach. You will find few sports that require as much dedication, structure, and focus as gymnastics.
Gymnastics can provide a great sport for many ADHD children due to its structure and high-energy demand as well as the opportunity to be more creative in some events.
On the other hand, be careful, as gymnastics does require a higher mental focus than many other options. This mental focus could provide additional challenges to some ADHD children.
If your child can get into gymnastics and stick with it, though, it can help them develop strength and focus and routine. Gymnastics can provide a great outlet to release excess energy as well as structure to help with ADHD behavioral modification.
Individual Sports for ADHD
In many ways, martial arts are the epitome of the individual sport. This can make it difficult for some personalities to flourish. Though, in many cases this might make it better for ADHD children.
Many ADHD children can use hyperfocus intensity if they connect well with an activity, which might make martial arts a great fit.
Martial arts require focus and determination and personal reliance, more so than many other sports. Many who start martial arts don’t make it very far due to the discipline and focus required. Martial arts might provide the most benefits to ADHD through the intense structure and routine.
Through practicing martial arts your child will be encouraged towards more structure in other areas of their lives. Such benefits make martial arts some of the best sports for ADHD.
Tennis ranks among the best sports for ADHD children due to the high energy requirement and the focus on individual effort and success. While tennis sometimes functions as a team sport, it mostly succeeds through the focus on individual athleticism.
Many ADHD children might feel drawn to tennis due to its fast paced speed, leaving little room for distraction. Tennis keeps its player’s on their toes, constantly moving and expending energy.
Additionally, most actions in tennis occur from muscle memory not intense concentration. This makes it easier for students who struggle with high concentration activities.
If you have a child that loves competition and constantly moving then tennis might just give you the perfect match of a sport for ADHD.
Finding the Best Sports for ADHD
Unfortunately, there is no perfect sport for any one child. Different parents might be reading this list and thinking that their child would hate one or more of these sports. Ultimately, your child’s personality and likes and dislikes will provide the most towards whether one sport works or doesn’t.
Use this list as a starting point when looking for sports to get involved in. Sometimes, it might take a few tries to get the one that fits best, but in the process your child might learn something about themselves. It can’t hurt to try. Help your child to get active by giving them a sport to try today.